Wikipedia:WikiProject Equine/Horse breeds

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The Horse breeds task force of WikiProject Equine encompasses the various breeds of horses.


This task force aims primarily to provide a full description of the various horse breeds. The project provides guidelines for a consistent outline format, elements to include, and tasks needed to be completed.

For the purposes of this task force and categorization, some horses that could be classified as a landrace breed, a feral breed or a type group (stock horse, gaited horse, etc.) are also treated as "breeds" for the purpose of category placement, as many readers, particularly young readers, are not necessarily cognizant of the nuances between a breed, a landrace or a breed type. Thus all articles related to horse breeds need to be added to Category:Horse breeds, which is a non-diffusing category. If a horse group is also appropriate for additional categories (such as the warmblood group of breeds, horses by country categories, etc.), it can be added to those categories as well. A closely related Wikipedia page is list of horse breeds, which is maintained to contain all horse and pony breeds as well as the "types" of horses that are not breeds.

Structure of Articles[edit]

The article List of horse breeds is a list of all various breeds and types of horses that currently are known to have Wikipedia articles written for them. Articles that need to be created are listed on the main project page in the "to-do" list and a hidden text <!--"Placeholder"--> is inserted into the list article. After the article is created, the placeholder can be made visible by removing the hidden text formatting.

Be sure to also do a search on the new article name and its common variations to be sure that it hasn't been created under a slightly different name. (For example, the project once had to merge three different articles on the Pottok, due in part to spelling variations)

Please Cite Your Sources! Many breed articles are currently tagged as unreferenced. Avoid copyright violations and peacock terms. Do not copy articles verbatim from another source. Remember to wikify article.

Basic outline[edit]

Ideally, each article on each breed needs include the following information, not necessarily in this order (depends on the article) and those articles which are stubs should have these sections added:

  • Title: Title the article for each breed based on the most common official breed name from the major registries in English-speaking nations. If no registry or names are equally split, use the most commonly used name in English language sources. If breed has the same name as a geographic region, add the suffix "horse" or "pony" (when appropriate) after the name. Examples: Arabian horse, Barb horse, Exmoor pony.
    Important note on naming: Wikiproject Equine has a guideline that breed articles use natural disambiguation, i.e. if the word "horse" has to be added to the title, that it be used without parentheses (as in Andalusian horse). WikiProject Equine usually uses parenthetical disambiguation in titles (horse) for articles about individually named horses that need disambiguation (i.e. Secretariat (horse)), the coat color articles (Bay (horse)), and other articles that need disambiguation but are not about horse breeds (bit (horse), driving (horse). In particular, this avoids confusion between breed names and individual horse names. Additionally, many horse breed registries include the word "horse" or "pony" in their name.
  • Introduction: general information about the breed, brief history, description. Follow WP:MOS for introductions.
  • Infobox: For project uniformity, infoboxes are added to all breed articles. Use the template below, gives basic information on other names, country of origin, etc. Please use only what's relevant and format it properly. For individual horses, infobox named horse is generally used instead.
  • Photograph: a good-quality photo (best) or drawing (not ideal, but better than nothing if no good photos) of the breed, if possible. For extinct breeds, a painting or drawing will work. An ideal photo is a full body shot of a good-quality animal, a perfect photo is a color photo of a beautifully-conformed horse of correct breed type, facing to the left.
  • Characteristics section is an overview of what makes the breed recognizable, and should include:
    • Unique conformation characteristics i.e. how to recognize a horse of this breed. Please avoid peacock terms and excessively promotional tone, this is an encyclopedia. Avoid stating "characteristics" common to all breeds: for example, all well–bred, well–fed horses have correct legs, ears that rotate 360 degrees, manageable temperaments, friendly eyes, a soft coat, and most can grow a long silky mane and a pretty tail. Spare us this nonsense. However, things like feathering is a trait of only some breeds, such as the Clydesdale, so it's OK to note things like that.
    • sub-categories of the breed or major bloodline groups, when and if relevant. (example: Welsh pony, sections A, B, C, D, see the four types of Finnhorse) Need not necessarily be separate sections, depends on breed.
    • Medical Issues: known unique medical or genetic problems that the breed can face. (Example, dwarfism in miniature horses) Be sure to source this material particularly well, as it is apt to be controversial and challenged. No need to mention laminitis or other conditions common in many other breeds, though some genetic diseases, such as HYPP or Wobbler's syndrome often are relevant in more than one breed articles as they may be found in multiple breeds who share common ancestors.
    • Coat colors of the breed, if limited or relevant and please wikilink to the color articles. See articles in category:horse coat colors or article equine coat color for correct terminology and other information. If a breed uses unusual coat color names, explain these terms and how these terms differ from the mainstream so as to educate the reader. (In Fjord horse for an example; what most call a grullo, they call a "gray." Had a hot discussion over that one) Please don't create new color articles just for an unusual name; better to expand a existing color article based on the known or probable genetics. In particular, review dominant white, pinto horse and dilution gene to see an overview of what's already been done with the more unusual colors.
      • Please do NOT refer to gray horses as "white." If a breed has white, not gray, members, then you can link to the white coat color articles. We have two articles about white horses, unless you know the breed has dominant white members, usually use the general-purpose white (horse).
      • Please link "Brown" with a piped link, to either Bay (horse) or to Seal brown (horse) because genetically, Seal Brown IS (based on current research) a genetically special subset of Bay, and non-seal brown dark bays are also bay horses influenced by other genetic factors (such as the sooty (gene)).
  • Breed History: explanation of the history of the specific breed. The older the breed, the longer this section is going to be. If the "breed" was created by a single or small group of breeders within the last 20 years, consider if you have a breed or just a designer crossbred. It may not be notable enough for a breed article.
  • Uses: most common uses or specialties to which the breed is put or best known. Avoid laundry lists, and avoid obscure uses that only a few individuals might be used for. (Yes, you CAN jump a Tennessee Walker or barrel race a Percheron, sort of, but really, it's not what they really are known for and it's best to just not go there.)
    • Controversies: if relevant. (For example, see material on soring in Tennessee Walker article.) Sometimes controversies don't need to be separate sections, just worked into sections on breed traits or medical issues. Please source carefully and remember WP:NPOV, these are usually sections that will be challenged.
  • Other: Some breeds have unique information that does not fit into any of the above sections and may need additional subsections added. For example, breeds with a studbook selection process may need space to discuss how the approval process works. A good example is Finnhorse.
  • REFERENCES: At a minimum for a start-class article, cite your sources at the end of the article under the heading "References." Ideally, footnote your sources as you go, and if possible, use citation templates or refill to make future formatting easier.
  • Remember to always add [[Category:Horse breeds]] to all breed articles and update the List of horse breeds
  • Templates:
    • Add the template {{Equine}} to the BOTTOM of each article for improved navigability (If it's officially a subspecies, such as an extinct fossilized ancestor, use {{Equidae}} instead)
    • Especially, remember to add the template {{WPEQ|breeds=yes|class=|importance=}} to the Talk Page of each article (not the main article page). Usually you can assess it yourself as class=stub or start (maybe C if you have a lot of footnotes already) and importance=low (ask WPEQ if you think it has a good reason to be higher) The template looks like this:
WikiProject Equine (Rated NA-class)
WikiProject iconThis page is within the scope of WikiProject Equine, a collaborative effort to improve Wikipedia's coverage of articles relating to horses, asses, zebras, hybrids, equine health, equine sports, etc. Please visit the project page for details or ask questions at the barn.
 NA  This page does not require a rating on the project's quality scale.
Taskforce icon
This page is supported by Horse breeds task force.

What to avoid[edit]

  1. Please do not create a copyright violation by verbatim copy and paste from a different source. This has been the number one reason that new horse breed articles get deleted by Wikipedia administrators. Write the article in your own words and use footnotes. See WP:CITE for help.
  2. Avoid sounding like promotional ad copy. Watch peacock words and flowery adjectives. If problem #1 above is avoided, this probably will be as well.
  3. Conversely, do not inadvertently "knock" the breed or implicitly "knock" another breed in comparison. Try to take a viewpoint that all breeds are valuable, each in their own special way. Some source material contains very biased viewpoints and one pillar of Wikipedia is a neutral point of view. Again, if verbatim copying is avoided, this problem will probably be avoided as well. For example, even if a source claims a breed has, for example, weak loins and crooked hind legs, be aware that such negative statements could reflect bias and should not be listed as a breed characteristic (no breed wants animals with such traits). However, if there is a controversy over a weakness in the breed (such as dwarfism in the miniature horse or the assorted genetic diseases that plague many different breeds), it would be acceptable to discuss that matter in a separate section.
  4. Do not create Galleries, except under extremely unique circumstances. (The galleries in horse markings are used to show a wide range of head or leg markings and is one of the few places where a gallery makes sense) Definitely do not create groups of random photos, as Wikipedia guidelines explicitly discourage "scrapbooks." Create photo galleries and gallery pages at Wikimedia commons.
  5. Don't get off topic. If an article starts to have significant content about a breed association, equestrian discipline, breed registry, or stud farm, consider removing it and creating a separate article about the organization. For example, see AQHA, Jockey Club or Claiborne Farm.
  6. Finally, please do not create a "Famous members of the breed" section. There are several reasons for this, the most notable being the Wikipedia guideline at WP:WWIN that discourages lists and collections of trivia or random facts. Some of the breed articles have suffered from long "Laundry lists" of "famous" individuals, some of which lack WP:NOTABILITY. (See WP:TRIVIA) Also, because Wikipedia bans advertising, listing the names of living horses can often smack of commercialism, at least unless the animal also has had its own Wikipedia article created and thus passes the WP:NOTABILITY criteria. Sometimes, naming living horses can also start edit wars over which horses deserve to be called "notable" and which do not. Overall, it is better not to name very many famous horses of a breed within the breed article. The exception is in a discussion of foundation bloodstock, when appropriate (and if equal time is given to at least the major factions, see WP:NPOV); or mention of significant accomplishments of a few individuals of a given breed that go beyond simply being this year's champion within their own breed. For examples of use of named horses in a discussion of foundation bloodlines, see American Quarter Horse#Development as a distinct breed or Morgan horse#Breed history. For examples of famous horses who did something outside their own breed's competition, see Arabian_horse#Competition.
Instead of listing horses within a breed article, creating a category for "Famous" members of a given breed or for related articles (such as articles about breeders, etc.) is often appropriate (for example, Category:Racehorses has hundereds of entries). Other examples are Category:Individual warmbloods or Category:Morgan horses. However, do not overdo category creation, as too many sub-categories often result in too few entries to be of much use for those seeking additional information. Creating a category does require locating any existing wikipedia articles about famous individual horses of a given breed and then adding the category at the bottom of each article.


  • Clean up tagged articles
  • Remove peacock words
  • Wikify and source articles
  • Add infoboxes to articles that do not have them
  • Locate and add appropriate photographs or other images to articles that need them
  • Add templates if not there already


Similar WikiProjects[edit]

Infobox horse breeds template[edit]

For template text, see Template:Infobox horse breed

For an example: Morgan horse